Hosted Archiving Comes of Age

Could a hosted service solve users' compliance, e-discovery, and archiving woes?

July 3, 2008

4 Min Read
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Hosted archiving services that combine archiving, compliance, and e-discovery in a SaaS (software-as-a-service) offering are quickly coming of age. Whereas, in the past, users were force to go in-house for this technology mix, outsourced services are an increasingly viable option for under-pressure CIOs and IT managers.

Hosted archiving solutions have been around for a while, but market uptake to date has been cautious due to customer concerns over privacy and control issues,” the Radicati Group reported in a recent online discussion on hosted archiving services. “This is changing rapidly, as a new generation of hosted archiving solutions reach the market with an attractive ROI proposition, targeted particularly for customers in the SME space.”

Companies in the hosted archiving space such as Amazon and Nirvanix offer a variety of services, but many hosted email providers are starting to offer hosted archiving in addition to the messaging technology they already offer.

Leading players today include:

In the past 12 months, the number of companies jumping on the hosted archiving bandwagon has exploded. Prior to that time, just a handful of companies were offering the service, and few wanted to get into the business. But with the help of SaaS, more companies have found reason to jump in.“Most importantly, more and more customers have found reason to use hosted archiving with SaaS,” Sara Radicati said in a Radicati Group Webinar last week. “So, basically with software-as-a-service capabilities, companies can be up and running in a couple of hours, there’s a little bit of design, and more often than not, the service provider will guide you in establishing the best solution for the design… with an even lower price. In essence, SaaS is making it much easier to set up than an in-house service.”

Although there multiple benefits of working with a hosted archiving provider, particularly for firms with limited IT resources or time, 76 percent of deployed services are done in-house, and 24 percent are deployed by an outside hosting service. That said, the Radicati Group has found that the hosted archiving segment is growing much more quickly than in-house, as more companies realize that the costs associated with outsourcing are actually a cheap long-term option.

Generally, hosted archiving services are priced based on a per-user, per-month, licensing model. Microsoft’s Exchange offering, for example, is $9 per month, per person, while Google Message Discovery for non-Google email customers is $25 per user for a fully loaded subscription that includes one year of retention for archived email. Google charges $10 per user for each additional year of archiving. Each user can also be allocated unlimited email storage space, Google says.

Autonomy Zantaz’s solution, known as Digital Safe, is $380,000 for those looking for an all-singing, all-dancing, fully integrated solution.

Regardless of pricing, the hosted archiving space is heating up. With a horde of companies competing for a relatively small piece of the market, most experts believe archiving prices will come down even more in the future, but as Radicati points out, the archiving market should grow by 40 percent each year through 2012 and revenue could jump to $6.6 billion by then.Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" below. If you'd like to contact Byte and Switch's editors directly, send us a message.

  • Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN)

  • Autonomy Corp.

  • AXS-One Inc.

  • CA Inc. (Nasdaq: CA)

  • C2C Systems

  • Dell Inc. (Nasdaq: DELL)

  • Fortiva Inc.

  • Google (Nasdaq: GOOG)

  • Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ)

  • IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM)

  • Iron Mountain Inc. (NYSE: IRM)

  • LiveOffice LLC

  • MessageOne

  • Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT)

  • Mimosa Systems Inc.

  • Mobius Management Systems Inc.

  • Nirvanix Inc.

  • Open Text Corp. (Nasdaq: OTEX)

  • Proofpoint Inc.

  • Smarsh Inc.

  • Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC)

  • The Radicati Group Inc.

  • Waterford Technologies Inc.

  • Zantaz Inc.

  • ZL Technologies Inc.

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